Cai Guo-Qiang: Head On
August 26–October 15, 2006
Throughout his career the Chinese-born, New York-based artist Cai Guo-Qiang has drawn on a wide variety of symbols, narratives, traditions, and materials such as feng shui, Chinese medicine, and gunpowder. For the Deutsche Guggenheimís Cai Guo-Qiang: Head On, the artistís first solo exhibition in Germany, he develops a concept that reflects the diversity of his oeuvre and establishes a unique link to the city of Berlin. Head On is a gigantic installation in which 99 stuffed wolves rush headlong toward the galleryís eastern wall. Although the leader crashes into the wall, the pack still races after him. In a special performance prior to the showís opening, Guo-Qiang will create a related nine-by-four-meter drawing using various sorts of gunpowder. This image, titled Vortex, shows thousands of wolves rushing across the paper, creating a swirling organic form that exudes energy, strength, and fierce resolution. These two pieces are supplemented by the video Illusion II, which documents a spectacular firework performance to be produced prior to the opening.
Cai Guo-Qiang: Head On is part of an ongoing series of exhibitions drawn from the corporate collection of Deutsche Bank. In 2008, Deutsche Bank will be the main sponsor of the Cai Guo-Qiang retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum, New York.
Cai Guo-Qiang, Illusion II: Explosion Project, 9:30pm, July 11, 2006, Stresemannstrasse/ Mockernstrasse, Berlin. Photo: Hiro Ihara, © Cai Studio